WAHOO – Traveling along at about 12 miles per hour, Paul Kremlacek has a pretty sweet view from where he sits.
“I always look back and try to take a picture with my phone,” the Malmo man said.
Kremlacek will again be driving the lead tractor this Sunday for the Fifth Annual Malmo Tractor Drive. The event is sponsored by the Malmo Volunteer Fire Department, with all proceeds going to department needs.
The day begins with a biscuits and gravy breakfast in the fire hall from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. The breakfast costs $5 a plate and is open to the public.
Those wishing to travel on the ride can also start registering in the morning. The ride will begin at noon.
After leaving Malmo, the group will travel to Weston, where the first break is scheduled at the Weston Fire Hall. From there, the route heads to Tuffy’s Bar in Touhy.
“We’ll take another little bit of a break there,” he said.
The route will then turn back to the north and will take the riders to Prague for another break before the return trip to Malmo, which should be about 5 p.m.
Kremlacek said a $5 dinner would be ready when the riders get back into town. The dinner is also open to the public.
About 100 tractors took part in last year’s ride, but Krelmacek said he was expecting a few more registrations. He has had some people inquire this year about driving vehicles other than tractors.
Jeeps, ATVs and other vehicles are welcome and will be placed at the back of the convoy.
“It’s not strictly tractors,” he said.
But it will be Kremlacek and his red tractor that will lead everybody on the approximately 40-mile route
Sunday. Malmo’s ride is not the only head of the pack event for him. He recently was the lead tractor for the Prague American Legion’s ride and, in previous years, started the Weston ride and the Great Nebraska Tractor Ride.
Kremlacek led his first ride about two years ago and he just keeps getting asked now. He doesn’t really mind it a bit.
“I kind of enjoy it,” he said. “It’s like the first person to break ground.”
And, Krelmacek has to look behind him often for more than just picture taking purposes. As lead tractor, he also has the responsibility of setting the pace so that no one falls behind.
He uses a GPS receiver to set his speed at about 12 miles per hour.
“Whether an older tractor or a newer tractor, they can keep up with that,” he added. “Some of those older tractors, about 12 miles an hour is about all they can do.”